I have a browser page which I'd like to transparently burn over my desktop behind all other windows. I'd like the background of the page to be transparent so that my wallpaper shows through, but I'd like to be able to set the alphas of various items in CSS.

Is there an application which runs WebKit which I could configure to do this?

I'm running Gala in elementary Luna (Ubuntu 12.04).


I have also tried to solve this in Ubuntu 12.04 running mate desktop environment. My solution looks like this:


google-chrome --user-data-dir=/home/loafer/.userscripts/chrome-bg-profile --kiosk http://localhost/bg &
sleep 2
wmctrl -r "localhost/bg/ - Google Chrome" -b add,below

I have created a script file with the content above to run at startup. The first command runs google chrome in kiosk mode (borderless window without controll elements in fullscreen) with a seperate user data directory. You have to define a data directory or else chrome won't let you start non-kiosk instances afterwards. I pointed the kiosk instance to my local server, let the script sleep for 2 seconds (the time it takes for chrome to start) and afterwards I force chrome to be always below all other windows with wmctrl. Change localhost/bg/ - Google Chrome to whatever window title your kiosk window has. You can get wmctrl from the official ubuntu repository with sudo apt-get install wmctrl.

I hope this works for you.

  • Forgot to mention: To make it seem transparent I set my wallpaper as background image on the html file I'm showing. – loafer Apr 4 '14 at 15:06

You might want to write your own Widget for the dashboard. I think there is a way to put them on the desktop. Those are written in html/css and runs on a webkit engine.

  • How do I do this exactly? How do I write such a widget? Any links on info on how to do that? – Naftuli Kay May 26 '13 at 19:51

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